Monday, July 14, 2008

Buyout numbers fall short, layoffs expected in Baltimore *

Thirty-four Guild members have applied for the buyout and another ten non-Guild employees are rumored to have applied, but the number is short of The Sun's goal of shedding sixty newsroom positions by the end of August. Notification to those approved for the buyout will begin Friday – as will the layoffs.

The buyout terms are similar to the package offered at other papers, however the Guild convinced The Sun to use seniority as the basis for application approval.

Guild leaders are surprised that the number of applications are as high as they are, given that it is the third round of buyouts since last June. Guild chair and Sun reporter Tamika White told the Daily Record:

"My opinion is that this is one more example of the frustration people feel here at The Sun,” she said. “The idea that the company could garner 34 [Guild] buyout applications just several months after staff reductions in this terrible, terrible economic environment, it shows that people … are reluctantly realizing that they’ve got to find something else to do and something with a little more stability."
* The Measure of a Company


Anonymous said...

Is it legal for Zell to use money from the employee's pension fund to pay "don't sue me" money to laid off workers? I've heard estimates that close to 200 million has been drained from the fund already. Doesn't this effect the ability of the company to meet it's current and future pension obligations?

Contributors said...

"I've heard estimates that close to 200 million has been drained ..."

The poster sent a correction: "... 20 million has been drained ..."

We're sure it isn't illegal but we're looking for a more complete answer than simply "yes, it is legal" – Stay tuned.